New Mexico has a wonderful visitor center on I-40 WB. The staff were very helpful. Sherry and I gathered about 5 lbs. of brochures and booklets each.
We decided to head to Santa Rosa and visit the Blue Hole (more on that later). We decided to stay at Santa Rosa State Park. Nice park, but well off the beaten bath (I-40). Could have spent more at a more convenient park and had Wi-Fi, water and sewer. I stress the Wi-Fi as both Jim and I miss our internet. But the stars were spectacular. The quiet was welcome. You can’t get that near the interstate.
After getting set-up,we headed towards Pecos to see the Pecos National Historic Site. Pecos preserves 12,000 years of history including the ancient pueblo of Pecos, Colonial Missions, Santa Fe Trail sites, 20th century ranch history of Forked Lightning Ranch, and the site of the Civil War Battle of Glorieta Pass.
It was a round trip of 207 miles. We made it to the visitor center 1/2 hour before they closed, watched the video and then toured the site. The ladies gave us a laminated walking tour sheet and told us to put it under a rock when we returned as they would be closed. Jim, Sherry and I walked up to the ruins. The ladies mentioned an upper parking lot but we didn’t think to take the car. Tom turned back after a short time (see below).
The most prominent feature of the site are the mission ruins. The pueblo was the home to about 2000 people. There was a central plaza surrounded by pueblo structures some of which reached five stories high.
After we completed the tour of the site we came upon the upper parking lot only a few steps from the mission. We could have driven up and Tom could have toured with us.
When we returned to the parking lot, Tom was talking to a couple from Texas. They had given him a granola bar. Turns out he was feeling light-headed. We have learned to carry water and snacks on these excursions but if they are locked in the car they do little good.
What a day. We were all whipped when we got back. I had the best night’s sleep since we started out.